It all started in 2009, on a bleak winter evening. I was talking to renowned WRC photographer, Richard Balint, who at that point had already published a number of annual, coffee table albums about rally. He suggested that I should do the same: start my series of cyclocross albums. The idea lodged in my mind and a few months later, my first book about the 2009/2010 season was out. It was a small-ish, softcover book, covering the World Cup races on 160 pages. I had a cunning plan – Zdenek Stybar won the overall World Cup title and I thought that a book, with him on the cover, was going to be irresistible for the Czech crowds at the World Championships at Tabor. I felt very optimistic, I booked space for a tent in the expo area and after tackling a considerable amount of obstacles, me and my Dad arrived at the race with 400 copies of the book. I was certain, that the 400 copies would go on the first day and that I should have printed more. Two days later, we returned with home with 360. I think I sold the last copy of that edition in 2015.
It felt like bitter failure but I also learned some crucial lessons. Two years later, when I published the first hardcover book, things went a lot better, but I still had plenty of copies left over and up until the World Cup in Milton Keynes, whenever I moved house, I moved a few hundred copies of books with me. They became a permanent feature in the flats and houses where I lived.
Then, at the expo area in Milton Keynes, something magical happened and I managed to sell most of the old copies of my cyclocross albums, and by that Christmas, almost all old copies were gone. It was good news to me, moving house became a whole lot easier, but I regularly received messages, people kept asking about the older copies, if they were ever going to be available again. The answer was a tentative no. The way lytho printing works makes it difficult to make small print runs financially feasible – anything below 300 copies would have meant losing money. However, printing 300 copies from all of the previous editions would have cost me tens of thousands of pounds, plus storage, etc. It just wasn’t going to happen that way.
It was roughly a year ago, when I was introduced to a digital printing company, who ended up printing the 2015/2016 book. While the original print run was late by almost two months, I realised that using digital printing, I could publish a low print run of the old cyclocross albums at a reasonable cost. It took me some time to find the old files, but finally, it all came together. The printing starts next week and so all the previous hardcover books will be available very soon. You can order any or all books at http://cyclephotos.bigcartel.com.